Fri, 30 Oct 2020

NOTEBOOK: Stafford talks pick-6, confidence moving forward

Detroit Lions
21 Sep 2020, 20:25 GMT+10

Tim Twentyman

It hasn't been a good start to the season for the Detroit Lions or veteran quarterback Matthew Stafford, as a 42-21 defeat at the hands of the Green Bay Packers Sunday dropped Detroit's record to 0-2 to start the season.

Stafford threw an interception in his second straight contest, and both have been critical mistakes. His fourth-quarter interception on the Lions' side of the 50-yard line last week against Chicago helped set up Chicago's game-winning touchdown.

He threw a third-quarter pick-six Sunday to Packers cornerback Chandon Sullivan that extended Green Bay's lead to 31-14 at the time and ultimately put the game out of reach.

Stafford said the Packers did a nice job bringing their free safety off the slot on a blitz. Stafford was attempting to hit his hot read on the play, wide receiver Danny Amendola. Stafford said he's got to do a better job feeling where Sullivan was on the play and either throw the ball away or try to extend it for a little longer to find another option.

"Obviously a huge play in the game I can't make," Stafford said afterward. "I have to find a way to make sure we're not giving up points there. If I have to throw an incompletion that looks horrible, or find a way to get around and just get the ball out, I've got to do that.

"There's plays in this game I want back, there's no question about that."

So far in 2020, Stafford is completing less than 60 percent of his passes (58.7) with three touchdowns and two interceptions for a passer rating of just 83.2.

Mitchell Trubisky and Aaron Rodgers have combined for a 105.7 passer rating vs. the Lions the last two weeks.

BOUNCE BACK PERFORMANCE

Kudos to rookie running back D'Andre Swift for having a bounce-back performance Sunday after the way Week 1 ended with that drop in the end zone.

Swift caught all five of his targets for 60 yards (12.0 average) against the Packers. The Lions knew Swift was a terrific receiver coming into the NFL and that his drop Week 1 was an anomaly. Swift looks like he can be a difference maker and matchup weapon in the passing game out of the backfield or slot for Detroit's offense.

LOSSES MOUNTING

It's 11 losses in a row now for the Lions dating back to Week 9 of last year. To be fair, eight of those came without Stafford, but even he has lost three in row now.

The Lions have had leads in a lot of those losses, some late, but haven't been able to make the calls or the plays to win the game.

"I'm confident," Stafford said after the game when asked about his confidence level in the coaching and schemes. "We have to go out and play better. That's the biggest thing. We have to play better in really all three phases."

Patricia is always quick to lay blame on himself after losses, but the players are equally as quick to put the blame on themselves for a lack of playmaking or execution. It's likely been a combination of both during this 0-2 start.

Whether the coaches have to put the players in better position to win, or a few guys have to step up and take it upon themselves to make more difference-making plays, the Lions can't afford to see their losing streak continue on this track heading to another NFC opponent in Arizona next week.

Sign up for Chicago News

a daily newsletter full of things to discuss over drinks.and the great thing is that it's on the house!